Welfare Market Making and the Private Organization of Social Services

Friday, 20 July 2018: 15:30-17:20
RC02 Economy and Society (host committee)

Language: English

The aim of this session is to explore the origins, structure and outcomes of private welfare markets. Private welfare typically originates in shifts from public provision of welfare to private market-based services. Welfare markets also originate in shifts from family provided care to market-based services, as part of policies to support families and move unpaid domestic and care labor to the market. Tax credits and other fiscal mechanisms create incentives and support for individuals and families to purchase welfare and care services as varied as private pension insurance, ambulatory eldercare, and private medical coverage from market providers, either to replace or supplement public programs. Introducing welfare markets means that providers compete and employment also shifts from the public sector to less protected private sector labor markets. State policies creating private welfare markets have consequences for the quality of services, and related to this, the quality of employment and work. One consequence may be increasing insecurities and anxiety among citizens in relation to life risks and the adequacy and affordability of available market-based protection schemes. Given the labor intensity of social and care services, another consequences of private markets may be the expansion of low-wage and informal labor also associated with the increasing use of migrant labor, especially in care services. Consumer organizations, labor unions and migrant rights groups may play an important role in efforts to educate citizens about market options, providing consumer protections and mobilizing to improve service quality and insure decent work.
Session Organizers:
Franca VAN HOOREN, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands and Clémence LEDOUX, Université de Nantes, France
Karin GOTTSCHALL, University of Bremen, Germany
Oral Presentations
Changing Welfare Market Structures and Politics of Re-Regulation
Stephan KÖPPE, University College Dublin, Ireland
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